Ranking the 5 best St. Louis Cardinals MVP winners in team history

The Cardinals have had players win the National League Most Valuable Player 21 times. Which players had the best of the best seasons in franchise history?

Baseball Hall of Fame Induction Ceremonies
Baseball Hall of Fame Induction Ceremonies / Ezra Shaw/GettyImages
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4. Stan Musial (1946)

In 1945, Stan Musial served in the military, thus missing that season. He came back in 1946 after serving in the Navy to put together one of his best seasons ever. Despite not playing baseball for an entire year and fighting in the Second World War, Musial was able to put up numbers in the 1946 season that are hard to replicate.

Stan the Man had a slash line of .365/.434/.587 for an OPS+ of 183. Not only did he lead the National League in about a dozen major stats, but he also led all of the majors in nearly a half dozen major stats. Musial's '46 season featured him eclipsing 100 RBIs, 15 home runs, and a 1.000 on-base plus slugging percentage for the first time in his career. He would go on to surpass those numbers multiple times late in his career.

Musial led all of the majors in categories such as hits, triples, total bases, games played, and at-bats. He was second in WAR among all position players and batting average. He was top 10 in OBP, SLG, OPS, runs scored, doubles, and RBIs. In addition to his league-leading stats, Stan Musial led the National League in stats such as runs, doubles, batting average, slugging percentage, OPS, and OPS+.

For as good of a season as 1946 was for Stan Musial, it also wasn't his best. That was yet to come.